This beauty pageant is comprised of buff participants, and the stars of the show are on wheels, not runways. The annual Dogwood Festival vintage auto show features a variety of antique cars. Classic cars will line the 400 Block of Hay Street near the festival stage on Sunday, May 1 to compete for for 48 trophies, including Top 20 People’s Choice Awards. You can get a first look at the classic cars as they roll through the Dogwood Parade on April 30. The annual stylish soiree features 100 vintage automobiles rolling into town from all over. In years past, automobiles ranging from vintage muscle cars to classic pick-up trucks have lined the streets to showcase their custom and meticulously cared for chassis’. Don Price of LaFayette Ford has sponsored the auto show for as long as he can remember. “It’s obvious that auto shows are directly related to auto dealers, older cars bring so much out in people,” Price said. In 1999 LaFayette Ford became more involved in the antique car business after they purchased the restored custom 1949 Ford convertible that became their mascot. The next thing you know Price said they were involved in many area shows and parades. “It’s a different type of people, from young kids through older folks, who come to these auto shows.” What defines a vintage car? Typically, the ‘Vintage era’ refers to cars built between the start of 1919 and the end of 1930, the end of World War I. But some enthusiasts insist that the Vintage era ended around the start of World War II. Years ago, the vintage auto show took place on LaFayette Ford’s lot on Raeford Rd. but since then, they partnered with the Dogwood Festival and now have an allotted space downtown adjacent to the venue. “That portion of Hay Street is the perfect site for the classic car show,” said Price. There are only 100 slots due to space for the vintage cars to show off their unique features and the venue fills up every year according to festival Executive Director, Carrie King. “The Dogwood Festival is one our most successful events,” King said. “You can have a full day of entertainment and it’s free.” The Dogwood Festival walked away with two awards this year at the Carolina Showfest Conference, the Rising Star award for best new event for New Years Eve Party in the Park and the Event of the Year award for North Carolina – for the second year in a row. King could not do it alone, yet she practically does. She has only one paid assistant who helps her keep all the pieces moving. She applauds and credits all the local support from businesses who come out to make it happen year after year. Besides this signature event, the week is filled with other festival delights, from the much adored pet show to the kids’ event tent, it is a weekend of fun and festival food. See you at the Dogwood Festival!